Delimitation of Afghanistan. Negotiations between Russia and Great Britain, 1872‒1885


Afganskoe razgranichenie (Delimitation of Afghanistan) was published by the Russian Foreign Ministry in 1886 to inform national and international audiences about the negotiations between the Russian and British governments in 1872‒75 and in 1883‒85 about demarcation of the northern border of Afghanistan. The book is in Russian and French, with the identical text on facing pages. Part one is an introduction that provides a historical overview of the negotiations; part two provides the texts of 159 documents produced by or relevant to the negotiations. Documents are presented in Russian and French; British official documents are also presented in their original English. At the end are three maps. The topics covered include the negotiations of 1869‒73 and the occupation by the Afghans in 1883 of the territories of Shugnan and Roshan (on the border of present-day Tajikistan and Afghanistan); the Russian conquest of the territory of the Ahal Teke (in present-day southern Turkmenistan) and the negotiations between Britain and Russia of 1882; and the Russian occupation of Merv (Mary) and the negotiations of 1884‒85 concerning the city and oasis. Among the documents reproduced in the volume are correspondence by Prince Gorchakov, foreign minister of Russia from 1856 to 1882, and by his successor Nicholai Karlovich Girs; dispatches from Saint Petersburg to London by Sir Edward Thornton, the British ambassador to Russia; and important bilateral documents such as the protocol defining the frontier between Russia and Afghanistan signed on August 29, 1885, by Lord Salisbury, the British prime minister, and Baron de Staal, the Russian ambassador in London.

Last updated: September 30, 2016